EAST ST. LOUIS — It wasn't perfection, but any win over the East St. Louis Flyerettes on their home court looks good to Belleville West coach Clayton Fisher.
Jesheon Cooper and Shay Fluker each scored 14 points as the Maroons beat the Flyerettes 53-47 Tuesday in a Southwestern Conference girls game.
The Maroons (17-7, 8-2) committed 29 turnovers, including 10 in the fourth quarter, but still held on for the win.
"Long story short, it was a nice win to come down here and get late in the year," Fisher said. "They exposed some things on us, but you know what, we're having a good year and we want to finish strong. That's our goal. Having a win down at East St. Louis, I guarantee there are not many people who say they did that this year. I'm proud of the girls for playing hard."
The 6-foot-5 Cooper nearly pulled off a triple-double as she also had 14 rebounds and nine blocked shots.
"Good for her," Fisher said. "Jesheon was finishing inside and altering a lot of shots. I know from close tonight, she finished. She put it in the hole. And, she played physical inside and she got her hand on a lot of balls. It was fun to watch."
The Maroons also got 10 points from Imani Berry and Jasmine Berry.
The Flyerettes (8-11, 5-6) were led by Brelanair Cox with 17 points. Dymonn Johnson added 11 points and freshman Janesha Munson and Dyneshia Powell each had seven points.
"We are improving," Flyerettes coach Hubert Butler said. "We made a drastic improvement and growth. Sometimes we have lapses, and when those lapses come, it comes in runs for the other team. That is what we have to learn how to handle a little better."
The Maroons led 21-20 at halftime, but they used a 9-0 run at the start of the third quarter to take 30-20 lead.
Fluker converted a three-point play and Cooper scored three straight inside baskets during the surge.
The Flyerettes drew within 49-47 with 47 seconds left after Johnson hit back-to-back 3-pointers .
Freshman Erika Harvey and Jasmine Berry each sank a pair of free throws in the final 43 seconds to clinch the win for the Maroons.
"I know Erika Harvey made two clutch free throws," Fisher said. "She has a chance to be an outstanding player. She's a little wide-eyed right now, but that's OK. I'd rather have wide-eyed freshman and sophomores than wide-eyed seniors any day."
The Flyerettes, who lost 48-33 to West earlier this season, grabbed a 12-8 lead as they forced the Maroons into making nine turnovers in the opening quarter.
Two free throws by Imani Berry got the Maroons within 12-10 at the end of the first quarter.
The Maroons pulled in front 16-14 on a basket by Cooper and expended their advantage to 23-16 on a 3-pointer by Jasmine Berry.
A layup by Powell trimmed the Maroons' lead to one point with 25 seconds left in the second quarter.
"I was very impressed with the way they played in the first and second quarter," Butler said. "We have some young girls, and they are really stepping up to the plate. They understand it. They have their skill moves down. It's just a matter of putting it all together."
Contact reporter Steve Korte at email@example.com or 239-2522.